“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”
Come to Chicago’s Roseland neighborhood with me. Drive down Michigan Avenue, past Root Brothers Hardware. “Checks Cashed” blinks in neon from the Currency Exchange, and “$2,300 – LIKE NEW!!” shines from the window of a red Chevy Cavalier. Snow falls on people outside Roseland Christian Ministries (RCM) as they wait for the food pantry to open.
Just inside the front door eight men and women are busy stacking cans and boxes of food. As they finish, RCM volunteer Ms. Arlene says, in a Jamaican accent, “OK, let us gather to pray. . . . Holy Spirit, fill us with the love of Jesus. May your gifts be given to your people. Amen.” For the next two hours this group of employees and volunteers serves groceries to people coming in from the local community.
The corner of East 109th and Michigan in Chicago is a part of God’s kingdom. Like a farmer who finds treasure in a field and then sells everything he has to purchase that field, I have had the privilege of seeing and working in a sliver of God’s kingdom here on Chicago’s South Side.
And as you meet some of the people here, my hope is that you may discover a deeper awareness of Christ’s presence in the communities where you live.
Lord, open our eyes to see you and our ears to hear you. May we be surprised by the treasure that is your kingdom in the communities we are a part of. Amen.
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